The Turkish national team drew 1-1 with Italy in the opening match of IBSA Blind Football European Championship Tuesday in Rome.
Italy's Iyobo Paul scored the first goal in the Group A match while captain İbrahim Üzüm scored Turkey's only goal. Turkey missed another chance to score with Ercan Bayraktar's penalty shot in the second half, along with multiple shots on goal toward the end of the match.
The team's coach Hasan Yıldırım said in a post-match interview with Anadolu Agency (AA) that Italy as the host was "more resistant and willing to win" but praised the team's gameplay.
"We aimed for three points but it is not a big deal. We can compensate for it in the following games," he said.
Turkey will take on Spain in today's games. İbrahim Üzüm recalled that their first game in the 2015 European championship that also ended with a draw against Germany.
"But we won the top title in the end and I believe history will repeat itself and we will return home as champions," he said.
Along with the title, teams will compete for a slot at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. The top two teams will qualify - Brazil, Argentina and Japan have already secured their spots in next year's tournament.